Human Rights Watch (HRW) called on the Assad regime to give answers for questions about the death of detainees in its prisons following the regime’s issuance of death notices for thousands of detainees who died in its prisons. It stressed the need for achieving justice by holding those responsible for crimes to account.
“A slip of paper with a date of death is no answer. The Syrian government, which is no doubt updating its civil registries to sweep the thousands of cases of disappearances under the rug, has much more to answer for,” said Lama Fakih, HRW’s deputy Middle East director.
She also said that “families have a right to know how their loved ones died and to have the remains returned to them. They have a right to pursue justice. They deserve to know the truth and to see the culpable punished.”
“The worse thing that can happen is to treat these human lives like files that a government can just seal with a stamp that reads “dead.”
“Russia and China have persistently blocked UN Security Council efforts to refer Syria to the International Criminal Court,” Fakih added.
“These files will remain open until every mother and father knows what happened to their child and until those responsible are punished. The rest of the world should support them in seeking truth and justice.”
“What does it mean to entertain the hope, for years, that one day the door will open and your son or husband walk back into your life, only to learn from a condescending civil registry form that that the dream and that person are long dead?” (Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Department)